However, the drop could be even greater, as the industry forecast does not yet contemplate the impact of the pandemic.
Mexico’s mining industry expects exploration investments to decline in 2020 to their worst level in 14 years, although the drop would be even greater given that it does not consider the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, according to figures released Tuesday. by the main local guild association.
The Mining Chamber of Mexico (Camimex) foresees a decline of 25.6% in exploration investments this year, to 399 million dollars, a level not seen since 2006, according to projections designed before the outbreak began to wreak havoc on the local productive activity.
“Surely (the estimate) is going to have some effects from COVID-19,” said Fernando Alanís, president of the association, who said that in recent years exploration activities in the country have suffered a sharp drop due to uncertainty of investors.
“Mexico has lost attractiveness as a mining investment destination, that is a fact,” added the executive, during a virtual press conference. “We have seen a very important reduction of more than 150 exploration companies that are no longer in Mexico and that is worrying.”
Last year exploration investments fell 10% to $ 536 million. The industry has been complaining about the fiscal regime in place in the country which, it says, has made this stage of the mining process less competitive.
Camimex groups together the largest companies in the sector that operate in the country such as Grupo México, Minera Autlán, Industrias Peñoles and Peñasquito, from the US giant Newmont.
Since taking office in December 2018, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has tried to build bridges with the business sector, after decisions such as canceling the construction of a new airport and changing the rules in the energy sector sparked concerns in the markets.